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Charity enforcement bill reminds you to exercise transparency

Posted By Erica Crenshaw, Execute Now!, Thursday, July 03, 2014

The state of California recently joined only two other states, Florida and Oregon, in the fight to stop fraudulent nonprofits from misusing donations. The California Assembly unanimously approved legislation last week that it would authorize regulators to use the registration fees paid by nonprofits and professional fundraisers to crack down on charities that spend little of their money on their mission. The unanimous vote sent the measure to the state Senate.

Assemblyman Travis Allen, the bill's sponsor, said this legislation will help regulators target groups that spend most of their money on fundraising. The state's attorney general could create 13 staff positions to handle administrative and court proceedings related to suspect nonprofits, help unregistered charities comply with paperwork requirements, and review charities' applications and financial reports.

"It's unacceptable when people are tricked into giving money to one of these scam charities where only three percent of the donation goes toward helping people," Allen said...

Read more at the Finance Fundamentals Newsletter

By Erica McGeachy Crenshaw, CEO of Execute Now!

Tags:  Execute Now! Finance Fundamentals 

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Propeller is recruiting social innovators! (Deadline: July 17th)

Posted By Andrea Chen, Propeller: A Force for Social Innovation, Thursday, July 03, 2014

 is seeking entrepreneurial solutions that will make a big difference for underserved communities and the environment.  Early-stage for-profits, nonprofits, and existing organizations with new ideas are encouraged to apply for the​ 10-month​
 2014-15 Social Venture Accelerator.  Application Deadline: July 17, 2014 at 11:59pm.
Interested but not sure if you are the right fit?  Contact Andrea at​
The Propeller Accelerator offers free co-working space, mentorship from successful entrepreneurs, including Mike Eckert, founder and former CEO of The Weather Channel, experienced strategy consultants, pro bono assistance (legal, accounting, graphic design), increased visibility, and access to networks.  Propeller Accelerator ​Fellows have been featured in the NY Times, WIRED, Forbes, GOOD, TechCrunch, and the LA Times.  

Apply Here
Learn More Here
Deadline: July 17, 2014
​Accelerator Program Benefits:​

  • ​Executive Mentors: Get one-on-one time with s​uccessful entrepreneurs​, including Michael Eckert, Founder & former CEO of The Weather Channel​,​
     and John Elstrott, Chairman of Whole Foods Market​.​
  • Accelerator Consultant: A paid consultant at the top of his/her field who joins your team in an area of greatest need to work one-on-one with you throughout the program for 27 hours/month. ​ Strategy sessions with Lead Consultant Kevin Wilkins.​  Check out  past Accelerator Consultants​.​
  • ​Free Space: A co-working office and meeting space (with Wi-Fi, printing and coffee) in our vibrant Incubator facility
  • ​Networks and Visibility: ​Propeller staff who make key introductions to potential investors, funders, customers, advocates, ​media, ​and policymakers.
  • ​Community: ​A collaborative peer community of Fellows.  Past Fellows have launched new collaborative products, shared arable land, purchased services or contracted with each other, and volunteered for each other’s ventures.
  • For Water Fellows: $5,000 grant/Fellow for seed project funding.​
​What kinds of companies have we accelerated?
  • The Healthy School Food Collaborative (‘12) administers over $9.8mm/year in federal reimbursements/year to bring healthy school meals to 39% of all public schools in New Orleans.
  • Jack and Jake’s food hub (‘11) secured financing to become operational during the Accelerator, serves public schools in the Healthy School Food Collaborative, and recently secured financing to begin construction on their 23,000 s.f. facility on Oretha Castle Haley Blvd.
  • Justice & Accountability Center of New Orleans (‘12) has served over 1,000 clients for non-violent criminal record expungements to facilitate successful societal re-entry and reduced recidivism.
  • The Fine Arts and Wellness Center (‘12) has secured $2.16mm in capital to build out an arts and health incubator in the Broadmoor neighborhood.
  • TrueSchool (‘13) has garnered over $200,000 in national contracts to reach over 200 teachers through its innovative applied research, design and professional development studios.
  • Griffin Law Group (‘13) has won over $300,000 in benefits for disabled children.

​Early-stage for-profits and nonprofits or existing organizations with new project ideas​ are encouraged to apply​.  ​Early-stage is defined as no more than 2 years with full-time paid staff OR no more than two full-time employees.
Selection Criteria:

olutions within 
Healthy Food Access/Local Food Economy​, Public Health, Water Management, and Public Education.
 Priority will be given to solutions within 
target ​
sectors. Alternative ideas outside of these sectors are still encouraged to apply.

2) Potential for Significant Social Impact
The challenge is clear; your strategy is sound; scalability is possible.

3) Financial Sustainability
​. ​
We expect reasonable and validated market analysis that supports your business model. Ventures with earned revenue streams receive priority.

4) Leadership & Dedication. ​You have the vision to motivate, the experience to guide you, and the grit to get it done. ​Fellows ​must devote a minimum of 20 hours per week towards their venture.
​Questions?  Interested in applying?  Contact Andrea Chen, Executive Director, at​

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Tags:  accelerator  incubator  propeller  social entrepreneurs  social innovation 

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Parents: Learn About Common Core State Standards, July 29 in Baton Rouge

Posted By John Smith, 100 Black Men of Metropolitan Baton Rouge, Saturday, June 28, 2014




(click image to download PDF flyer...Please share!)

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No-Fee Fundraising Site CommitChange Lures Shark Tank’s Mark Cuban

Posted By Jason Nicosia, CommitChange, Friday, June 27, 2014


Billionaire investor Mark Cuban of ABC’s "Shark Tank” now backs LANO member CommitChange, a new online fundraising platform that refuses to skim profits from charitable donations.

LANO member CommitChange, a new online platform for nonprofit fundraising, has closed a $700,000 seed round led by Mark Cuban of the popular ABC television show "Shark Tank.”

Cuban, along with prominent investment firms Draper Fisher Jurvetson, 500 Startups and others, looks to reinvent digital philanthropy with an innovative suite of free fundraising tools that focus heavily on the donor experience.

As a comprehensive fundraising tool for nonprofits, CommitChange seeks to unseat dominant industry player Blackbaud (BLKB - $1.7B), along with a host of existing online donor portals that earn revenue by keeping as much as one tenth the amount of each processed donation.

According to Roderick Campbell, CEO and Co-Founder of CommitChange, the company is dedicated to "eliminating donation skimming as a business model and . . . will never profit by taking a percentage of donations."

The site’s core technology is available for free to all 501(c)(3) nonprofits.

After a brief registration process, the site accepts and routes online donations to participating charities and manages fundraising campaigns through a private dashboard. Event ticketing and donor management features will be released later in 2014. Larger nonprofit organizations can access advanced versions of these tools and other services for a fixed monthly subscription, the company’s planned strategy for generating revenue.

Already in use by nonprofits and their supporters across the country, the platform is well reviewed and performing better than competitors in several categories.

CommitChange cites the following current figures:

• Average donor gift of $162 (vs $146 national average)

• Average recurring gifts of $44/mo (vs $19/mo national average)

• 11.7% of all donations are recurring

• 32 second average donation time

For more information about CommitChange, visit, subscribe to the company blog at its LANO member profile or contact Jason Nicosia at


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“Charter School 101” Workshop To Be Held July 19 in Baton Rouge

Posted By Michael Eskridge, Advance Innovative Education, Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Advance Innovative Education is proud to host a one-day workshop specifically designed to assist new charter school applicants in submitting successful charter school applications and planning for future success.


When:Saturday, July 19, 2014

Time: 9:00am – 3:00pm

Where:Louisiana Resource Center for Educators (LRCE)

5550 Florida Blvd., Baton Rouge, LA70806



In addition, this workshop offers a vendor fair for participants to network with charter school vendors and explore their support services.


The registration fee of $100.00 allows participants to bring a team of four individuals and lunch is provided.


For vendor and participant registration information go to our website or contact Dr. Michael Eskridge at or 225-301-8141.


Click image (above right) to download flyer.







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Good news for nonprofits seeking operating grants

Posted By Erica Crenshaw, Execute Now!, Thursday, June 19, 2014

Few of us have the chance to ask program officers or foundation board members to tell it like it is. And if they do, how often must their answer be filtered to protect their foundations and positions?
If you don't have a foundation officer you can ask to be a truth teller, Foundation Source's recent annual report on private foundations is your next best thing--especially if you're a nonprofit seeking elusive operating support. Tune in to some interesting and encouraging statistics...

Tags:  Execute Now! Finance Fundamentals 

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LANO Welcomes New Member Services Director, Fairleigh Cook Jackson

Posted By Kelly Pepper, Louisiana Association of Nonprofit Organizations, Wednesday, June 18, 2014


Fairleigh Cook Jackson, LANO's New Member Services Director, begins Monday, June 23
The Louisiana Association of Nonprofit Organizations and its more than 13,000 members will soon benefit from the addition of nonprofit professional and Louisiana native Fairleigh Cook Jackson as our new member services director.

Jackson, most recently the director of museum advancement for the LSU Museum of Art, brings extensive public relations, member management and fund development experience to her new role. As member services director, she will be an advocate and ambassador for LANO statewide and will help convey the critical role that members play in the association’s overall impact and influence.

The newly-created position will also assure the ease of member enrollment and pursue retention and recruitment goals consistent with association growth and member satisfaction.

A seasoned and effective nonprofit advocate, Fairleigh is the past director of the Community Fund for the Arts at the Arts Council of Greater Baton Rouge, which raised more than $1 million for arts organizations under her leadership. As director of development for Boys and Girls Club of Greater Baton Rouge, Jackson managed a successful annual campaign and secured important sponsorships and grant revenue for the charity.

Jackson is a Baton Rouge Area Chamber leadership graduate of the class of 2010 and served on BRAC’s 2012 Canvas Committee as organizer of the Arts & Parks workshop held in Louisville, Kentucky. She also co-led efforts to establish the Mid-City Cultural Arts Designation and currently serves on the boards of directors of the Mid City Redevelopment Alliance and the Baton Rouge Leadership Alumni.

Jackson will begin at LANO on June 23 and will work from our Baton Rouge office at 447 Third Street.

For more information about LANO’s new member services director or the association’s mission and membership benefits, contact President and CEO, Kelly Pepper at (225) 929-8739 or visit


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Exclusive FREE Fundraising Workshop Coming Up!

Posted By Kris H. Rutledge, CausePlanet, Monday, June 16, 2014
Would you like the words "predictable, consistent and measurable" to describe your fundraising results?

Ellen Bristol, author of Fundraising the SMART Way™, is providing a special workshop webinar at your desktop on Thursday, July 10, to give you techniques to meet these descriptors.

Techniques include:
  • Ideal-funder profile and Scorecard to rank donors
  • Donor Moves
  • Pipeline targets
  • Consistent metrics

Register now for this FREE workshop for all LANO members and Friends. (The link requires LANO network sign-in to register.) This workshop is FREE thanks to the generous support of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana Foundation.

See CausePlanet's book summary of Fundraising the SMART Way™ for more information. This and over 100 other summaries are FREE for LANO's General and Associate (dues-paying) members, again thanks to the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana Foundation.

Follow these steps to download book summaries:

1. Log in at on the left panel, using your email address on file with LANO and "Password1".

2. Click on the "Summary Library" tab and download any title you like.

3. Questions? Email us at

 Attached Thumbnails:

Tags:  author interview  CausePlanet  Page to Practice 

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LANO Member Health Center Receives National Award

Posted By Administration, Sunday, June 15, 2014


SAINT GABRIEL, LA —The St. Gabriel Health Clinic, Inc.’s Monticello satellite office was awarded recognition today by the National Committee for Quality Assurance, or NCQA, an independent accrediting body that certifies a wide range of health care organizations.


The Patient-Centered Medical Home award combines input from the American College of Physicians, the American Academy of Family Physicians and other expert groups to recognize medical practices that provide high-quality, patient-centered, coordinated care, and support access, communication and patient involvement.

The NCQA recognition also highlights the vital role clinicians play in advancing quality health care. Linked to this award are nurse practitioners Lisa Robertson-Poitier, NP, a sixteen-year veteran who leads the office’s in-house clinical team, and clinical consultant Grace Dinvaut, FNP.

St. Gabriel Health Clinic CEO, Victor C. Kirk, M.Ed., praised the work of his entire staff in achieving the prestigious four-year recognition and noted the contributions of Chief Operations Officer, Marilyn Antwine, a health records and practice management expert.

NCQA President Margaret E. O’Kane said that by earning this recognition, clinicians Robertson-Poitier and Dinvaut "demonstrated that they provide effective, evidence-based care to their patients."

Added O'Kane, "Recognition shows that the St. Gabriel Health Clinic, Inc. has tools, systems and resources to provide its patients with the right care at the right time."

For more information about the St. Gabriel Health Clinic, Inc., and its satellite locations, contact Victor C. Kirk, M.Ed., at: (225) 642-9676.


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SGI Cares & LANO Invite Everyone to Northshore Networking Event

Posted By Kali Johnson, Solid Ground Innovations, Tuesday, June 10, 2014

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